By Alex Green and Laura Harding, PA
Queen drummer Roger Taylor has described anti-vaxxers as “pathetic” and backed coronavirus passports for live concerts as a “great idea”.
The musician, 72, spent lockdown recording his first solo album in nearly a decade, titled Outsider, and is due to embark on a tour featuring own material and Queen classics.
Billed as “a set of intimate shows”, Taylor will perform across the UK in October 2021 playing 14 shows, his first live performances outside of the band in two decades.
Criticising those who refused the vaccination, he told the PA news agency: “The anti-vaxxers I don’t get. I don’t understand that at all. It seems to be born of pure ignorance and an amount of arrogance and the conspiracy theories. It’s pathetic actually.
“Of course vaccinations work and we are so lucky to have them, to enable our own bodies to fight the virus.
“I know people that think it is some giant conspiracy. I just don’t understand them and to be honest I just think it is idiotic not to be vaccinated.
“And as for people only doing concerts for people who are not vaccinated, that is even more stupidity.”
Taylor said he does not understand the “hesitation” of some in checking people have been vaccinated or tested for the virus before they attend live concerts.
He said: “It’s a very simple thing. Here we are. I am double vaccinated. It makes complete sense to me and all this (controversy about) curtailment of freedom is absolute nonsense when you can be tracked through your phone or many other means.
“This supposed curtailment of freedom is a joke. I think passports are a great idea and I do think we owe it to everybody else to not spread the damn thing around.”
Taylor also suggested he would continue to perform for as along as possible.
The rocker has toured heavily with Queen since he and guitarist Brian May recruited Adam Lambert as singer in 2011.
He said: “Tick tock, time is rushing by, when you get to the age of Brian and myself.
“We are just getting older and I don’t think we will be able to do it that much longer, and while we still can do it, we intend to keep doing it.
“And same applies to Queen actually. We realised that this is what we do. This is what we love doing. And while we still can do it at a good level, we will.
“I think as soon as we can’t we shall retire with some shred of dignity.
“You can’t do this forever but as long as we can do it properly we will do it. And obviously as long as people want to see it.”
The tour is due to kick off with a performance at Newcastle’s O2 Academy on October 2nd and ends with a performance at London’s O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire on October 22th.
Tickets are available online.